Ashlee shares -
"I had an abortion when I was barely 17 and the choice brought with it freedom, liberation, and relief. I knew that for both myself and the other person involved, continuing the pregnancy would have changed the course of our lives in a very limiting way. This was in no way a sad or difficult decision. To be free of that unwanted pregnancy, and supported in my choice, was a very important benchmark in becoming who I am today.
When I was 29, already the mother of a 6 year old, I was navigating a very difficult twin pregnancy. My very wanted babies were dying as a result of Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome and I was given the choice by my MFM to terminate the pregnancy or selectively abort one of my girls at 19 weeks. At the time, these options were not anything I wanted to consider as I was clinging to the naive hope that somehow they would both be okay. While I stand by that decision being what I needed at the time, one of my daughters died anyway, and her sister was born extremely premature as a direct result of the choice I made to continue the pregnancy.
At 34, I became pregnant again. Very unexpectedly but with a partner I adore, and a person I know that I want to have children with in the future. For many reasons, the timing of this pregnancy was not right and we decided together that we both wanted and needed to wait. While, I know this was the right choice for our whole family, the children we have and those we hope to have someday, the process was incredibly difficult both emotionally and physically.
I didn’t share my story publicly for a long time, not because I’m ashamed, but because I knew that there would be ignorant judgement. In today’s political climate however, I will continue to share and shout for our reproductive rights and freedom. Women were having abortions long before they were legal and they will continue to seek them if that changes. Access to safe and affordable abortion services should be a basic human right afforded to all women."